With a population of over a billion, India is an excellent market for dentists. As per National Oral Health Programme, 95% of the Indian population suffers from gum disease while only 50% use a toothbrush. Added to this a mere 2% of the population visit a dentist!
While there are significant opportunities in this sector, graduates question the viability of dentistry as a profession. The concern comes from a lack of jobs in the private and government sector and an overall disinterest in oral health care amongst the population. Both problems are being solved by creating awareness on the importance of oral health and hygiene.
Setting up your own dental practice is an option that most dentists look at. But there a few skills that sets one apart when it comes to becoming a notable dentist. On this International Dentist’s Day, GoCheck picks out the top 5 skills required to become a successful dentist:
Fine motor skills and quick reflexes are a must to become an excellent dentist. On a daily basis, one would be dealing with sharp instruments and fidgety patients, while working inside the confined space of someone’s mouth. Superior hand-eye coordination along with precision is essential for performing dental procedures.
Communication tops the skill list for any professional belonging to the healthcare sector. As a dentist, one would need to talk to a patient, understand their health issues and communicate the treatment plan, effectively.
Dentists work in close quarters to a patient – being just inches away from a patient’s mouth at times. Without good bedside manner, your job is at risk. As a dentist one needs to pay attention to their interaction with the patients and empathize with them. Remember, most patients are scared to see a dentist – it is your job to ensure that they are relaxed when they come to see you.
Attention to Detail
Imagine a dentist working for 2 hours to fix your crown, only to find that the crown isn’t placed properly or does not fit. This wouldn’t have occurred if the dentist was paying attention in the first place. Attention to detail is a must-have skill as a dentist as one isn’t just promoting oral hygiene, but also enhancing the aesthetics of a smile.
Adaptability applies to incorporating technological advancements and staying informed about industry trends. Dentistry is a continually evolving industry with new modes of operation/ innovation coming up every other day. To stay ahead of the curve dentists need to continually learn and adopt new skills.
The Indian Dental Association (IDA) is an excellent source to learn and develop your scientific and technological skills. IDA provides various continuing education programmes in the form of online certification, webinars, live seminars, fellowship programmes and an educational training centre to impart clinical practical training.